Running for a seat in the provincial legislature is very symbolic for Doug Bing his brother paved the way for rights for Chinese-Canadians, and he is reaping those benefits.
Bings older brother Fred served in the Second World War, despite the fact that Chinese-Canadians had few rights at that point in history.
The family legend is that the Bing patriarch smashed the dinner plates when he heard his son wanted to go to war but then he signed the papers.
Bings father couldnt understand why his son would fight for a country that discriminated against him and treated them so badly.
But his brother had the opposite view, Bing said.
...Fred wanted to show the government he loved this country, he was a loyal citizen, Bing said.
And when Fred came back the recognition of his and the service of other Chinese-Canadians paved the way for them to vote and hold office and integrate into society.
What Fred did really affected me he made a significant and lasting achievement, Bing said.
I was the beneficiary of all these things... Bing added.
After a slight hesitancy in going down the road of running for office, Bing thought about what his brother did for Canada despite immense discrimination against his race, and he felt he had an obligation to also offer his time and energy in service of his country running for political office.
Bing is in his third term as a city councillor in Pitt Meadows, and each time he has topped the polls.
Bing moved to Pitt Meadows in 1980 after studying to be a dentist, and he was the first dentist in the City.
He shared his practise with his wife, Helen, with whom he has three grown children.
While Pitt Meadows council is fairly harmonious, Bing is making a foray into a very polarized political arena.
Its going to be interesting, its going to be a challenge, he said. I dont think its going to change me.
Bing sees a parallel between dentistry and politics as a dentist, he has to listen to people, ask questions, figure out what the problem is, and come up with a solution.
Bing believes the majority of British Columbians are fiscally conservative but socially progressive, and thats why there has been a right-wing coalition party in office for 48 out of the last 61 years.
To me the Liberal party reflects the majority of the population, Bing said.
He also feels that the partys beliefs reflect his beliefs.
As the child of an immigrant family, Bing said he epitomizes the Canadian dream, having been the first in his immediate family to graduate from university.
Bing said he believes education can open doors and opportunities and transform lives.
I really see the value of education I really see that as the hope for the future of our young people, he said.
In 1999, Bing was vice-chair of the Official Community Plan review committee, and in 2005, when another review was done, he was co-chair of the committee.
This led to him running for office for the first time, and being elected in 2005.
Bing officially retired just two days before the writ dropped, after practising dentistry for 33 years.
Bing was planning to run for mayor in 2009, but when he realized that two other councillors, Deb Walters and John Becker, were running as well, he decided to seek another term on council, worried what would happen if three experienced councillors left office.
I thought it was prudent on my part to step back, he said.
As a City councillor, Bing has served on several boards, including the parks and leisure commission, Fraser Valley Regional Library board, the Citys green leadership team, Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Youth Services Society, the Lower Mainland Treaty Advisory Committee, and as the council liaison to the chamber of commerce.
In his professional life, he also belonged to the Council of College of Dental Surgeons.
@ Copyright 2013